Ricardo Saprissa

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameRicardo Juan Antonio•Saprissa Aymá
Used nameRicardo•Saprissa
Other namesRicardo Saprissa
Born24 June 1901 in San Salvador, San Salvador (ESA)
Died16 August 1990 in Alajuela, Alajuela (CRC)
AffiliationsSportiva Pompeya Club, Barcelona (ESP)
NOC Spain


Ricardo Saprissa was an all-around sportsman who played tennis, baseball, football and hockey (field) at the top levels. He was born in El Salvador to Catalan parents, and lived much of his later life in Costa Rica, coaching football. Saprissa played for RCD Espanyol from 1922-32, helping them win the Spanish football championship in 1928. He also won a Spanish hockey title in 1924, and played several international friendlies in hockey, abandoning the sport in 1925 because of knee problems.

Saprissa won the Spanish tennis singles titles in 1923-24 and played one Davis Cup match for Spain in 1930, defeating the Belgian doubles side. He always maintained he was an El Savadoran citizen, and is considered the first ever Central American Olympian.

In 1932 Saprissa left Spain and moved to Costa Rica, where he coached the local football side, Orión, and was their President. He became the national team coach, leading them to silver medals at the 1935 and 1938 Central American and Caribbean Games, and the 1951 Pan American Games. In 1935 he co-founded and funded a youth football club, Deportivo Saprissa, serving as the President of the club from 1948-81, and the stadium also bears his name, Deportivo Saprissa Stadium.


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1924 Summer Olympics Tennis ESP Ricardo Saprissa
Doubles, Mixed (Olympic) Rosa Torras =15
Doubles, Men (Olympic) Eduardo Flaquer =9


Previously shown as Raimundo Saprisa, perhaps mispelt by Spanish NOC?